How much time in Animal Kingdom?

We’re planning to go to Animal Kingdom the day after our arrival. I’m not planning on getting there until the afternoon because I’m hoping River of Light will be open by then and we would just stay afternoon to evening that way. (As opposed to coming in the morning and taking an afternoon break). My DD6 is much more into the animals than the rides, so I’m trying to get an idea of how many hours to plan in the park at a minimum. Here is what we absolutely want to see:

  • Kilimanjaro Safaris
  • All the animal trails
  • Flight of Wonder
  • Lion King show
  • Finding Nemo the Musical
  • Some of the Wilderness Explorer Badges
  • Dinner at Tusker House
  • River of Light (assuming it is running)

Here is what we WON’T do:

  • Kali Rapids
  • It’s Tough to be a Bug
  • Expedition Everest
  • Conservation Station (most likely)
  • Dinosaur
  • Primeval Whirl

In fact, I’m hoping to sneak past Dinoland. I really don’t want to get sucked in the playground or the carnival games there. I’ll never get her out!

So, with that in mind, what is the latest time I should arrive at the park? I want us to be able to take our time and have it be a “relaxing” day of meandering, but I don’t want to get there so early that DD6 gets tired out and can’t make it to ROL. The park is scheduled to close at 7pm this day.

I think I would start by looking at the show times. It can be challenging to schedule multiple shows!

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Have you made a personalized touring plan? That will give you time estimates and figure out the timing for the shows. I’d guess that you’re looking at 6-9hrs depending on how long you eat, how much time you spend on the trails, how long badges take, crowd levels, etc

As @PrincipalTinker said, the first thing to do is look at the show times. I’d try and do the shows later on but spaced out. Then look at a map and work out how to get to everything, to minimise walking.

Having done that you may need to think about the trails. I assume you’re going sometime in the winter, so sunset will be early. If so, then you’ll probably want to do them earlyish! BUT if you do them on the way in, you risk running late for other stuff. Maybe plan to eat on Discovery Island and do the trails before hand. That should be a bit of a break, before then doing a show and anything else left. Definitely fpp the safari and maybe the shows; you’ll then know you’ll get in as long as you arrive 15 minutes

You can avoid Dinoland by going to Nemo over the bridge from EE (Asia) and going back the same way.

Make a touring plan with your list of must do’s. Optimise it and see what it suggests. Then copy it, rejig it according to what you come up with and evaluate. Then compare them.

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Just noticed you want to eat at Tusker House! You could still fit in the trails round then. Were you meaning the Oasis/Discovery Island trails or the Africa & Asia ones? I was meaning the Oasis/DI ones. The others can be treated as rides and done where they fit into the route round the park.

Yes, all of the animals trails! Moar Animals!! (That was my daughter speaking). I will definitely doing the touring plan and check out the show times before hand. Thanks!!

I’d start with Nemo and work your way round to Lion King via the trails and Safari, then dinner at Tuskers, followed by Discovery island & RoL.

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If you are trying to avoid Dinoland Nemo will be a danger zone!

The single biggest challenge to touring AK is fitting in all three shows in less than a full day. Your first step is to get the showtimes for each show and plug those into your schedule. If you don’t have FPPs, you probably need to be at the theater NLT 30 prior to show time.

You didn’t specify when you trip is. Based on current “trustworthy rumors”, ROL will probably not be open before the week of Nov 15th. If ROL is running, expect the closing time of the park to be later than 7:00 (no one “knows” what time, but a popular rumor is somewhere between 8:00 and 9:00, at least in the Fall/Winter months). There will very likely be ROL dining packages at TH; if that’s the case, I would recommend going that route. Officially there will be standby viewing of ROL, but practically speaking, either a dining package or an FPP will be the only to guarantee seeing it.

Also remember that they are running both day and night safaris; if you have an animal lover in the family, you might want to consider doing both.

Although the trails have no lines to speak of, they do close at sunset, so you will need to front-load those to make sure you fit them in before it gets dark.

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That’s what I’m afraid of. LOL

Yes, this is a little of what I was afraid of. Our trip is mid-February, so I’m hoping it will be operating by then. A dining package would be AWESOME. We’re doing TH anyways, so that would kill two birds with one stone. But this is all helpful info to mull over. Thanks!!